Radio Kansas began broadcasting as a 100,000 watt FM facility serving Hutchinson, Newton, McPherson and Wichita in 1979 with one FM station and a vision for
Hutchinson Community College opened a 50-watt student FM station
in 1972. The station's signal could not be received much beyond the campus.
In 1978 the college decided to upgrade the station to a full power,
professional public radio station. On July 1, 1979 KHCC-FM, 90.1
MHz, Hutchinson-Wichita signed on as a 100,000 watt professional
public radio station. The station employed a staff of five from
the main administrative building at Hutchinson Community College,
Lockman Hall. The mission was to bring the finest in public radio
to the central part of Kansas. From the beginning, quality was
the single most important goal of Radio Kansas. That vision resulted
in rapid growth for the station in programming quality and public
financial support. It also resulted in a very good public image
from the earliest days and that image continues today.
Station growth saw Radio Kansas move in 1984 to a new facility at Davis Hall,
located about one mile from the main HCC campus in Hutchinson.
The new location offered
state-of-the-art studios and, for the first time, adequate office
space for a staff that had grown to 17.
As KHCC grew, citizens from other parts of Kansas began to inquire
about how they could get public radio in their areas.
By working with groups of supporters in these communities, KHCD-FM,
89.5 MHz, Salina-Manhattan was built and began broadcasting
on January 28, 1988. This station serves the north-central part of the state extending to
the Nebraska border.
Finally on August 3, 1992 KHCT-FM, serving the Great Bend-Hays
area was added to the Radio Kansas network.
It was a struggle saying KHCC/KHCD/KHCT dozens of times a day, so with the three stations, we
knew we needed something simpler. At this time, the
name Radio Kansas was adopted to solve this problem.
In 2006 Radio Kansas was among the first adopters of HD Radio, a new technology that adds digital radio signals to the FM we already broadcast. Then in 2012, this new HD signal was augmented with a power increase and the addition of two more program channels, all riding on this new HD technology. Again Radio Kansas is at the forefront of HD techologies providing listeners with now three separate program channels of enjoyment.
At the same time, two of the channels, HD1 and HD3, are available for internet streaming from the Radio Kansas web site.
These streams can be heard on a wide variety of Internet radios, computers and mobile devices.
Radio Kansas continues to strive for the highest in quality in
everything it does. The station continues to be recognized as
one of the premiere public radio operations in the country.